would this be discrimination?

I know you aren't supposed to discriminate against someone with a disability, however, we have an hourly production worker who has a disease that will only get worse as time goes on. We have every intention of accommodating him as long as we can. As you know, production workers' performances are based on "production". If this person produces less and less as time goes on are we justified in not giving him an increase during his performance appraisal? We don't know if this would be considered "discrimination" because of his disability.


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  • Accommodation doesn't require that we develop different production standards for disabled people or that we 'pretend' they are productive when they are not. When standards are not met, rewards do not follow. You should not feel obligated to reduce your standards nor award unearned increases. Although situations like yours are emotionally tough on us, we have to hold everyone to standards and apply consistent discipline when production standards aren't met. Not to long from now you'll be faced with the very real prospect of having to terminate.

    Note: The preceeding is my personal opinion and has no value beyond that. Although it may be 'sorta offensive' or 'indeed offensive' to someone out there, it is offered without regard to that possibility. Should you find yourself alarmed by my post, you may privately mail me to protest or you may alert the principal's office. x:-)
  • Paying an employee according to productivity is not discrimination if you are paying everyone in the same manner. Make sure you are keeping productivity records on everyone and pay according to productivity. You need to pay them the minimum wage (if you don't have a special certificate from DOL to pay less than minimum). But anything beyond the minimum wage can be based on productivity.

    For example, the Department of Labor allows employers who have employees in a sheltered workshop to pay according to productivity. This may involve paying less than minimum wage, but the employer has to obtain a special certificate from the DOL in order to do this.

    Hope this answers your question.
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